The Business Coach with Laura Murphy: Managing a small team

Question: “I manage a small team and it’s challenging, finding a balance between motivation and discipline, which I can admit I have got wrong a few times! Any advice?” Charles

Answer: “Managing a team can be challenging, regardless of size and by understanding that sometimes you got it wrong means you’re already on the path to getting it right. So my first bit of advice is to believe in yourself. Research shows that confidence in your own performance is the biggest factor in managing successfully.

Analyse what went wrong in the past, why and take the lessons. More importantly, though analyse what went right, why and build on that. If self-analysis is difficult, treat it as a performance audit of a work colleague, or get someone to help you so they can be objective, asking the right questions whilst you’re being reflective. Remember, management is complex and situational. No two incidents will be the same so you’ll always be evolving and adapting. And no one gets it right every time.

A common issue when I go into organisations is poor communication. It’s easy to slip into the assumption that people in a small team know things by osmosis or instinct. They don’t and that’s when problems can arise, so ensure that everyone knows exactly what’s expected of them.

You’re clearly self-aware: learn from your failures and successes and be confident.”

Laura is an organisation development specialist and executive coach with mtc2 ltd and was Highly Commended in the Eastbourne Business Awards Business Person of the Year. To solve your problem email Tweet @WayfinderWoman Names and details have been changed to protect confidentiality.